Category Archives: Law

California’s Climate Litigation

It’s going to be a loser, on multiple levels:

San Mateo County claimed in its complaint to be “particularly vulnerable to sea level rise” with a 93 percent the county will experience a “devastating” flood before 2050. Imperial Beach and Marin County also claimed in their separate complaints to be vulnerable to devastating floods because of climate change.

“If sea levels were to raise that high, it most certainly would be catastrophic,” Epstein said.

However, bond offerings in the last few years by those counties and cities weren’t so forthcoming about those predictions, Exxon said in a verified petition filed last month with the District Court in Tarrant County, Texas.

San Mateo’s 2014 and 2016 bond offerings told would-be investors that the county “is unable to predict whether sea-level rise or other impacts of climate change or flooding from a major storm will occur,” Exxon’s petition said.

Imperial Beach and Marin County never disclosed the same information to perspective bond investors that was detailed in their complaints against the energy companies, Exxon’s petition said.

Making those claims in their lawsuits against energy companies – but not in their bond offerings – smacks of hypocrisy, Exxon is arguing.

As he says, cross-examination will be brutal.

The Tradeoffs Of Reducing Gun Violence

Thoughts from Dan McLaughlin:

Even if the mainstream media goes dark, there’s social media. Our exhibitionist culture may encourage disturbed people to perform acts of retribution that guarantee them maximum publicity; think of the mass shooter as taking a kind of mass selfie of rage. But that genie can’t be put back in the bottle, either, at least not without a massive campaign against freedom of expression.

As always, human beings are the real weapons of mass destruction, and the tools they choose are not the causes of violence. If we want to weed out people who might commit violent acts in the future, we need to scale back due process protections and incarcerate more people on less evidence. Although that too is a trade-off many of us would find it hard to make, we could plausibly target privacy laws that make it difficult to compile records on people with a history of threatening behavior.

Some don’t want to accept that freedom comes with a cost. Or they don’t care about freedom.

[Update early afternoon]

Five terrible messages the media sends to school shooters.

Yes. They’re only encouraging more of it.

[Monday-morning update]

Six reasons your right-wing friend won’t come around to your “arguments” about gun control.

People don’t react well to being accused of being evil and wanting children to die because you disagree with them about a policy.

Climate And Libel

Some thoughts on Michael Mann, the lawsuits, and the sad state of climate science, from Judith Curry.

[Update a couple minutes later]

Colonizing The Moon

I agree that we have the tech to do this affordably, but I strenuously disagree with this:

The activities at this moon base would be focusing on science, as is the case in the Antarctic. It could provide an official U.S. government presence on the moon, and its motivation would be rooted in U.S. national policy—again as are the U.S. Antarctic bases.

To the degree that the focus should be on “science,” it should be about better learning how to live on the moon, and Antarctica is a terrible precedent, in that we aren’t allowed to exploit it for its resources. That’s also why the Outer Space Treaty itself, which was modeled on the Antarctic Treaty, is a problem.

Susan Rice

Why she wrote an email to herself.

I continue to await Horowitz’s report. I suspect it will be a bombshell.

[Update a few minutes later]

The Trump and Clinton scandals are claiming a lot of bodies, at the Justice Department. I suspect that there will be some going down at Foggy Bottom, too.

[Update a few more minutes later]

Rice’s memo implies that Comey seriously misled the Senate about his meeting with Obama. In Comey’s rant about “liars and weasels,” he displays a serious lack of self awareness.

[Update a while later]

Carter Page, useful idiot.

I can’t recall in my life such a huge disparity between the media narrative and reality.

[Update after noon]

Last link was wrong, fixed now.

On The Corruption Of Obama And Clinton

Break down that wall of silence.

Yes, they figured they’d get away with all of it because they assumed they were going to win a rigged election. Then when she was to incompetent to win a rigged election, they panicked and the big cover up and counterattack began.

[Saturday-morning update]

Given all of the other revelations that are pouring out, it sure would be nice if there were some discussion in comments about, oh, I don’t know…the actual topic of this post?

[Update a while later]

FBI agents ready to revolt in the corrupt Clinton probe. Long overdue, if true. I think, or at least hope, that Comey’s name will go down in infamy.

[Update a couple minutes later]

Oops, just noticed the date on that. Still, it rings true.

And this one is today: Hillary’s fingerprints are all over the FBI investigation of Trump. This really is (or should be, if we had a press worthy of the name) the biggest scandal in U.S. history.

Space Transportation Conference

I’m tweeting about it, which is a better way of rapid updating than blogging, and it gets a lot more views. So…

[Update a while later]

Meanwhile, SpaceX will be testing elements of BFR next year.

Also, the failed center corefirst stage that they failed to expend from the previous Falcon 9 launch couldn’t be safely recovered, so the Air Force scuttled it with an air strike.

Yes, as per comments, I screwed up in the middle of listening to a talk on launch regulations at the same time.

The Memo

Here it is.

[Update a few minutes later]

And here are the key findings.

[Late-night update]

This is worse than Watergate.

I’ve been saying for years that Barack Obama got away with things that Nixon could only dream of. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. And we’re only finding out because despite all their machinations, their candidate lost. If she’d won, it would have been corrupt business as usual.

[Saturday-morning update]

Why did the Democrats lie so baldly about the memo?

Because they’d reached the point at which it was the only, last resort.